Instead of Dungeon World's Bonds, we will play with Flags.
Flags are behaviors that other players enable, ideally ones that really emphasize elements of your character as you envision them. So, if you envision your character as gullible, then the flag might be “Tell me a lie that I beleive”. If you envision your Paladin as righteous, then the flag might be “Offer me an easier solution that cuts corners I am unwilling to cut”.
Now, when in game the group encounters a guard post, the thief can propose that the group bribe the guard. The paladin gets all paladin-y about its, and insists they proceed honorably. The Thief has effectively hit the Paladin’s flag, and at the end of the session, the Paladin gets an XP in the same way that she would if she’d had a relevant bond. Flags are also what is used instead of Bonds in the Aid or Interfere move.
Every character must have 2 Flags, and the Bard and any other bond heavy class can have up to 3 Flags.
The flags themselves will need a few things:
- They must have a clearly identifiable action (So they can’t be judged by effect – “Make my wizard feel bad” is a poor flag. “Refuse my wizard’s aid because he’s a foreigner” works well)
- They must create some sort of conflict or tension, usually reflected by a choice. There must be a legitimate alternative. “Attempt to poison me so I can notice it” is pretty bad, because there’s no reason to “not” notice it. If there is not a choice, the action itself must be something that could complicate things. “Call me bob” is a poor flag.
- They should give me an opportunity to show off something about my character that I might not otherwise have the chance to.
A few possible flags
Gullible – Tell me a lie will I believe.
Liar – Believe and act on a lie I’ve told you.
Righteous – Offer me an easier solution I must refuse on principle.
Outsider – Refuse my aid because I’m different.
Leader – Allow me to make a decision so you can criticize it.
Heroic – Let me keep you from going first into danger so I can go myself.
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